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AWN, Quality Wool to be third largest broker
Feb '11
Sydney-based broker, Australian Wool Network (AWN), and Adelaide-based company, Quality Wool, last week signed a Heads of Agreement to merge the two companies in April.

Managing Director of Quality Wool, Mark Dyson, will join AWN Managing Director John Colley as the major shareholders of the expanded corporation and Mr Dyson will take a position on the parent AWN board.

AWN and Quality Wool will continue to trade the same and will retain their respective brands in the industry.

AWN started in New South Wales 12 years ago and has expanded into Queensland, Victoria, South Australia, Tasmania and Western Australia; while Quality Wool, which celebrates its 20th anniversary in the industry this year, has extended its operations throughout SA, western NSW, Victoria and across to WA.

The newly expanded AWN group will have a combined throughput in excess of 250,000 bales as well as more than 100 staff, making it the third largest broker in the land.

Mr Colley said the merger brings together AWN's strong links in Europe with Quality Wool's excellent relationships throughout Asia, which now acquires more than 80 per cent of the Australian wool clip.

“Importantly, it will allow the businesses to present an improved wool marketing offer to Australian growers and to increase the level of support and market feedback for their clips,'' Mr Colley said.

“This new arrangement is a great opportunity for all clientele of both companies. It is the perfect mix required to give growers all the feedback they need to ascertain the best method of marketing their wool.

“With the sheep and wool industry now at one of its highest points for the last 30 years, it is exciting that this new organisation has the international relationships, expertise and drive to once again make the wool industry the backbone of rural Australia.''

In addition to wool brokering, AWN also offers livestock and real estate services, while Quality Wool also recently established a developing farm inputs and merchandise business, which trades as Quality Rural.

Mr Dyson said the merger would add vital economies of scale and operational efficiencies to the businesses, which also would contribute to offering a better wool marketing package to growers and allow the respective brands to continue to grow in the industry.

“Quality Wool and AWN have great business synergies and we are like-minded in terms of our focus for the future direction of the Australian wool industry,'' Mr Dyson said.

He said the merger also would extend the footprint for the respective companies' livestock, real estate, farm input and merchandise businesses.

Australian Wool Network

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